Urban Environment during Post-War Reconstruction: Architectural Dominants and Nodal Points as Measures of Changes in an Urban Landscape

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Bartosz Czarnecki, Michal Pawel Chodorowski

Subject: Arts & Humanities, Anthropology & Ethnography Keywords: city grid; urban landscape; landmarks; urban nodes; city image; blitz; reconstruction

Modernist planners were given the opportunity to apply the idea of ​​the Modern Movement in the implementation of cities transforming after World War II, which was not possible before in long-term evolving structures. Usually, however, it was impossible to change everything: some urban and even architectural elements were necessary to be preserved. As a result, the elements of the ancient landscapes of these cities - historical objects and spaces - necessary for the continuity of evidence of history and identity have been preserved, sometimes through reconstruction. Finally, in some of these cities, both old and new elements contribute to the contemporary urban landscape. The aim of the research is to examine two key categories of urban structure in this perspective: 1. landmarks 2. urban network nodes. For this purpose: 1. the changes in the number and rank of the space with which the landmarks exhibition was carried out were compared; 2. the changes in the rank of nodes in the urban structure functioning both in the pre-war and in the present structure, as well as changes in their distribution and concentration areas were analyzed. The numbers of individual elements were balanced and the changes in the structure of their arrangement were analyzed with the use of a polygon grid. The analyzes were based on the case of a medium-scale European city (Białystok). Research shows that as a result of post-war reconstruction, the number of elements of the urban grid decreased, especially those of lower rank, the rank of others decreased.


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